Indian Affairs Current Affairs 2019 - Current Affairs Today

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  • FAME II scheme has made compulsory for electric vehicles to feature 50% localisation for receiving subsidies

    15 hours ago
    The government notified the second phase of the FAME India scheme with a Rs 10,000-crore outlay to encourage adoption of electric and hybrid vehicles. Under the second phase of the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles in India (FAME-II) scheme, 10 lakh registered electric two-wheelers with a maximum ex-factory price will be eligible to avail incentive of Rs 20,000 each. It will also support 5 lakh e-rickshaws having ex-factory price of up to Rs 5 lakh with an incentive of Rs 50,000 each. FAME-II will offer an incentive of Rs 1.5 lakh each to 35,000 electric four-wheelers with an ex-factory price of up to Rs 15 lakh, and incentive of Rs 13,000 each to 20,000 strong hybrid four-wheelers with ex-factory price of up to Rs 15 lakh. It will support 7,090 e-buses with an incentive of up to Rs 50 lakh each having an ex-factory price of up to Rs 2 crore.

    Amartya Sen Chairs at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) for research on inequality

    15 hours ago
    The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) announced the creation of the Amartya Sen Chair in Inequality Studies, named in honour of the India-born economist, philosopher and Nobel laureate, who was Professor of Economics at LSE from 1971-82. The public announcement of the chair was made during LSE’s biannual Amartya Sen Lecture. The lecture, 'Foundations of State Effectiveness', was delivered by Professor Sir Tim Besley with Professor Sen serving as discussant and LSE Director Minouche Shafik chairing. The inauguration of the Amartya Sen Chair marks a further milestone for the International Inequalities Institute (III), following the 2016 launch of the Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity programme, backed by a historic 64 million pounds, 20-year gift by The Atlantic Philanthropies, the School’s largest to date.

    TCS signed a deal with India Post to transform country's mail delivery system

    19 hours ago
    India's largest IT services company, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), has partnered with the Department of Posts in a bid to transform it into a multi-service digital hub, modernise the delivery of mail and packages, enhance customer experience, and launch innovative services that will drive new revenues. In 2013, TCS had announced receiving an over Rs 1,100 crore multi-year contract from the Department of Posts (DoP) for an end-to-end IT modernisation programme. Core System Integration (CSI) program designed and implemented by TCS, involved deploying an integrated ERP (enterprise resource planning) solution that caters to mail operations, finance and accounting, and HR functions, and connects its vast network of more than 150,000 post offices, making this the largest distributed ePostal network in the world. TCS is the same company that, along with the Ministry of External Affairs, revamped India’s passport services through the Passport Seva Kendra (PSK) initiative and ‘Student Connect’. About Tata Consultancy Services (TCS): It is an Indian multinational information technology (IT) service and consulting company. It is the second largest Indian company by market capitalization. Founded: 1968 Founders: Faquir Chand Kohli, J. R. D. Tata, Tata Sons Headquarters: Mumbai About India Post: Founded: 1 April 1854 Founder: Government of India Headquarters: New Delhi Subsidiary: India Post Payments Bank

    Ministry of Ayush inked MoU with CSIR to cooperate in the field of research and education

    19 hours ago
    Ayush Ministry signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi for cooperation in the field of research and education of traditional medicines how to integrate traditional medicines with modern science. CSIR and Ayush Ministry jointly developed the Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) which prevents bio-piracy and misappropriation of traditional knowledge. About CSIR ♦ Headquarter: New Delhi ♦ Director General: Shekhar C. Mande About Ayush Ministry ♦ Founded: 9 November 2014 ♦ Minister: Shripad Naik (MOS independent charge)

    India Ranks 17th In Global Startup Ecosystem

    20 hours ago
    According to data released by StartupBlink, India moved up to 17th position in 2018 from 37th spot last year in the Startup Ecosystem Ranking for 2019. The top three spots remained unchanged with the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. The cities with the most vibrant startup ecosystems in India are Bangalore, New Delhi and Mumbai. India ranks 17 globally among 100 countries, based on the strength of its startup ecosystem, according to StartupBlink, which tracks startup ecosystems on a number of parameters. It used data from startups, accelerators and co-working spaces registered on its platforms as well as data received from global partners such as Crunchbase and SimilarWeb.
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    ECI launches Voter Turnout App

    2 days ago
    Election Commission of India (ECI) launched a new mobile app for the voters across the country to see the realtime availability of voter turnout during the election season in the country. The beta version of the ECI's Voter Turnout app is available for download on the Google Play Store and as of now it has been downloaded over 5,000 times. The captures the real-time information gathered by the Returning Officers following which it calculates the estimated totals. It then displays this information over a user-friendly user interface in the app in the Android app. The app as I mentioned before is available for download on the Google Play Store and users need to have a smartphone running on Android 4.4 KitKat or above to be able to use Election Commission's newly launched mobile application.

    Rahul Gandhi promises 33 percent reservation for women in Parliament

    3 days ago
    Congress President Rahul Gandhi promised  33 per cent reservation for women in Parliament and government services if his party led alliance is voted to power. Addressing an election meeting at Supaul in Bihar Prime Minister Modi had misled country in the matter of creation of a record number of jobs for youth. About Rahul Gandhi Born: 19 June 1970 (age 48) New Delhi, India Political party: Indian National Congress Parents: Rajiv Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi

    ECI appointed Bihar Ex CEO AjayV Nayak as Special Observer for West Bengal

    20 April 2019
    Election Commission of India (ECI) appointed Bihar's former Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Ajay V. Nayak as a special observer for West Bengal He is a retired IAS officer of the 1984-batch has been appointed as a special observer for West Bengal by ECI. The Commission has earlier appointed Vivek Dube as the special police observer for the state. About Election Commission of India  Formed: 25 January 1950 Objectives: Constitutional Autonomous Body conducts the elections to the offices of the President and Vice-President of India, Parliament, State Legislative Assemblies and Legislative councils Jurisdiction: Government of India Headquarters: New Delhi First executive: Sukumar Sen Preceding executive: Om Prakash Rawat

    Cabinet approved the funds for implementing 10 percent EWS Quota

    20 April 2019
    Union cabinet approved the sanction of Rs 4315.15 crore for the 158 Central Educational Institutions (CEIs) for implementation of reservation in admission to students belonging to Economically Weaker Section (EWS). With the approval of the Cabinet, over 2 lakh additional seats will be created in 158 Central Educational Institutions (CEIs) across the country to implement 10% reservation for the Economically Weaker Section (EWS). While 1,19,983 additional seats will be created during 2019-20 academic session, 95,783 seats will be added in 2020-21. The Rajya Sabha on January 9 approved amending the Constitution to provide 10% reservation to general category poor in jobs and education, with the government terming the landmark move as "slog over sixes". The quota will be over and above the existing 50 per cent reservation to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes (OBCs).

    Mumbai Police launch probe against UPL for poll code violation

    19 April 2019
    The Mumbai police have started an investigation into the seizure of campaign material of the BJP from the premises of United Phosphorous Ltd (UPL) in Mumbai. A flying squad of the Election Commission (EC) had raided the premises of UPL at suburban Khar, where electronic cards for the BJP's poll campaign were being allegedly assembled. The returning officer had then issued a show-cause notice to the company. Sanjay More, senior inspector at the Khar Police station said the Khar police had earlier registered a non-cognisable offence in the case. The police have now started an investigation in this case after seeking proper permission from the local court.

    Home Expo India 2019 Begins in Greater Noida

    17 April 2019
    The 8th edition of Home Expo India 2019 opened at India Expo Centre and Mart, Greater Noida. The three-day exhibition has been organized by the Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH). Home Expo India covers sectors with maximum thrust and growth potential in home décor, furnishing, furniture, flooring, and textiles. About Home Expo India 2019 Rakesh Kumar, Director General – EPCH, O.P. Prahladka, Chairman- EPCH, Ravi K. Passi, Vice Chairman-EPCH, and prominent members of the committee of administration were present during the inauguration ceremony. About 500 companies in permanent marts will be exhibiting their collection under these categories at the state of the art India Expo Centre & Mart from 16 – 18 April 2019. The buyers from more than 50 countries which included buyers from traditional markets of the USA and Europe and buyers from countries like Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, UAE, Lebanon, Iran, Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Vietnam, Romania and many more have also confirmed their participation.  

    Centre sets up an Indo Pacific division

    17 April 2019
    The Ministry of External Affairs has set up an Indo-Pacific division in the foreign office. The Indo-pacific division is intended to give a coherent architecture to the Indo-Pacific policy. The policy was articulated by PM Narendra Modi at the Shangri-La Dialogue in 2018. In India, the policy will be run by the MEA.  About Indo-Pacific Wing: The Indo-Pacific Wing is currently headed by joint secretary Vikram Doraiswami The Indo-Pacific Wing will integrate the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), ASEAN region and the Quad  The Indo-Pacific Wing is expected to give thrust to the Indo-Pacific centred policymaking  The US has recently renamed its Pacific Command to the Indo-Pacific Command as it seeks to give teeth to its Indo-Pacific policy In its Indo-Pacific diplomacy, India has repeatedly placed ASEAN at the centre of its policy Shangri-La Dialogue: The IISS Asia Security Summit: The Shangri-La Dialogue (SLD) is a "Track One" inter-governmental security forum held annually by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS). It is attended by defense ministers, permanent heads of ministries and military chiefs of 28 Asia-Pacific states. The forum gets its name from the Shangri-La Hotel in Singapore. It has been held since 2002. About the Ministry of External Affairs: The Ministry is responsible for the conduct of foreign relations of India It is also responsible for India's representation in the United Nations Formed: 2 September 1946 Headquarters: Raisina Hill, New Delhi Minister responsible: Sushma Swaraj

    Health Ministry to frame law to ban manufacture and sale of e cigarettes

    16 April 2019
    The Ministry of Commerce and Industries instructed the Health Ministry to frame law banning manufacture and sale of e-cigarettes in the country as in the absence of the domestic legislation, it would not be possible to put a blanket ban on its imports.  The Commerce Ministry stated that without banning domestic sale and manufacturing of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) through the law, it will be an infringement of global trade norms to put an import ban.  What happened earlier? ♦ Earlier, the Health Ministry had asked the commerce ministry to issue a notification banning the import of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), including e-cigarettes and flavoured hookah ♦ To put the ban into effect the Commerce Ministry has urged the Health Ministry to frame rules regarding the domestic sale and manufacturing so that the Ministry of Commerce and Industries can go ahead with imposing of the blanket ban on the imports e-cigarettes: ♦ Electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes are devices that do not burn or use tobacco leaves but instead vaporise a solution, which a user then inhales  ♦ The main constituents of the solution, in addition to nicotine, are propylene glycol  As per the World Health Organization report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic 2017, governments of 30 countries which includes Mauritius, Australia, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Brazil, Mexico, Uruguay, Bahrain, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, have already banned the Electronic cigarettes.  

    A unique proposition to pay electricity bill on EMIs launched by Bajaj Finserv

    16 April 2019
    A unique proposition to pay electricity bill on EMIs launched by Bajaj Finserv through its lending arm Bajaj Finance Ltd. through the campaign of #BijliOnEMI. Customers can avail an Insta Credit loan in their Bajaj Finserv Wallet to pay their electricity bills on EMI. Bajaj Finance Ltd. financed the purchase of over 12 lakh air conditioners across our country in the year 2018. Bajaj Finance Ltd launched this campaign and customers buying air conditioners of Rs 20,000 and above will be eligible for Rs 5000 Instant Credit loan and for the air conditioners above Rs 40,000 will receive Rs 7000 Instant Credit loan to their Wallet. The Wallet facilitates the customer to access the EMI network card digitally, like tracking loan-related details online, transacting securely with EMIs on purchases, etc.  About Bajaj Finserv Ltd. Headquarters: Pune Founder:Jamnalal  Bajaj Revenue: 71.5 crores USD Subsidiaries: Bajaj Finance Limited 

    Bamboo rice showed up in Odisha nearly after four decades

    16 April 2019
    Bamboo rice has shown up in Odisha nearly after four decades. The state of Odisha had last witnessed Bamboo rice in 1979. The Forest Authorities of Chandaka-Dampara Wildlife Sanctuary in Cuttack district have opened up the gates for the forest dwellers to collect the Bamboo rice.  Whenever the bamboo rice shows up, it would be accompanied by the increase in the rat population which starts running over the bamboo rice. Hence to avoid the menace the forest authorities have allowed forest dwellers to harvest Bamboo rice.  Further, the authorities are also planning to purchase bamboo rice from the forest dwellers to germinate bamboo trees in other areas of the state.  Bamboo Rice:  ♦ Bamboo rice is not commonly available as it takes many years for a bamboo tree to flower ♦ Bamboo rice grows out of a dying bamboo shoot. Bamboo rice looks like paddy rice and tastes more like wheat ♦ Bamboo rice is believed to contain a low glycaemic index compared to other varieties and it is good for diabetics ♦ It is rich in proteins and does not contain any fat ♦ Bamboo rice is also believed to be containing medicinal values Odisha: ♦ Capital: Bhubaneswar ♦ Governor: Ganeshi Lal ♦ Chief Minister: Chief Patnaik ♦ Official Language: Odia

    The 4th Resilient Cities Asia-Pacific Congress 2019 started in New Delhi

    16 April 2019
    The 4th Resilient Cities Asia-Pacific Congress 2019 organised by the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) and co-hosted by South Delhi Municipal Corporation started in New Delhi. It will conclude on 17th April 2019. It offers a lot of innovative solutions that build resilience to climate change at the sub-national level. Local governments in the Asia Pacific region is the main target of the event. The RCAP 2019 is a platform for discussing the opportunities and mechanisms of executing the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). The proposed themes that have been recognised for RCAP 2019 are: Integrated climate resilience planning to manage risks and vulnerabilities Good governance and resilience Nature-based solutions to adaptation Climate knowledge brokering Opportunities for regional networking and collaboration Sustainable infrastructure development and green growth Urban Nexus Financing mechanisms for Asian cities About Resilient Cities Asia-Pacific: ♦ It was launched in 2010. ♦ The first three editions conducted in  Bangkok, Thailand in February 2015,  Malaysia in March 2016 and in Vietnam in December 2017.

    West Bengal celebrates Bengali New Year's day

    15 April 2019
    West Bengal is celebrating Bengali New Year's day. The Bengali business community opens new books of accounts known as Halkhata on this day. Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee have greeted the people on the occasion. "The first day of the Bengali New Year is known as Poila Baisakh. People are wishing each other saying Suvo Nabo Barsho and exchanging sweets and greetings. Traders open new books of Accounts which is known as Haal - Khata. The priests draw Swastikas on the new account books to please Lord Ganesha. The Bengali newspapers have come out with special supplements.

    Rotary Club of Madras North initiated Project Kannamma

    15 April 2019
    Project Kannamma is the initiative of the Rotary Club of Madras North to provide sanitary napkins to the students.  Project Kannamma:  ♦ It was started in August of 2018 by providing free, biodegradable sanitary napkins to 82 students at the Government High School in Uthandi of Tamil Nadu ♦ Under the Project Kannamma, sanitary napkins are provided to over 300 students from across Government Schools in and around Chennai today  ♦ The sanitary napkins are provided by the Irula Tribal Women's Welfare Society (ITWWS) ♦ The project is also supporting the livelihood of the Irula Tribal Women  ♦ If the group sells 15,000 pads per month, it can sustain the families of 12 tribal women

    Jet Airways cancels all overseas flights for operational reasons

    14 April 2019
    Jet Airways grounded services across the Eastern and North-eastern markers and also suspended its international operations for a day while ten more planes were forced out of the fleet. Its board met in Mumbai discussing the operational issues, while airlines' strategic partner Etihad Airways submitted initial bids for a higher stake in the crippled carrier. The airline will also not operate the Bengaluru- Amsterdam-Bengaluru flight on 13th of April. All Jet operations to and from the Eastern and Northeastern states are suspended till further notice. Jet flight 9W 615 Mumbai to Kolkata and 9W 675 from Kolkata to Guwahati are cancelled due to operational reasons.

    Indian Railways unrolls new quota for foreigners and NRIs to book tickets

    13 April 2019
    Indian Railways is one of the leading railway systems in the world. With new enthusiasm, Indian Railways introducing new schemes for the betterment of services and exciting plans. Indian Railways lifted restrictions so that now Foreigners and NRIs can book tickets in all classes. The foreign tourists who travel in Indian trains are allowed to book tickets in the first AC, second AC and executive classes through IRCTC website up to 365 days in advance. Under the FTQ category, the Railways has allocated four berths per coach in a sleeper and 3rd AC classes while seats have been parked per coach in chair car classes.

    Maharashtra Introduces seven doctors to contest LS elections this time

    13 April 2019
    Maharashtra introduces seven doctors ready contesting the elections from amongst the 48 constituencies. Of the seven-doctor contestants, four belong to the Bharatiya Janata Party, while one each belongs to the Shivsena, the Nationalist Congress Party and the Indian National Congress. It is solely in the state of Maharashtra that it is introducing seven doctors ready contesting the elections from amongst the 48 constituencies. Dr Sujay Vikhe Patil, he acts as the Chief Executive Officer of Dr Vithalrao Vikhe Patil Foundation. Posturing the professional aura he owns, he will be matching the poll from the Ahmednagar constituency, the opposition is a question yet.  Meanwhile, newly joined NCP member Dr Amol Kolhe pulls up to contest against Shivaji

    PM Modi to address rally in Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra

    13 April 2019
    Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be addressing a rally in Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra. The meeting of BJP workers was held in Ahmednagar to review preparations for PM’s rally.  He is the son of Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, the Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly. Sujay Vikhe Patil on being nominated by the Congress from the Ahmednagar constituency, which has traditionally been contested by its ally NCP.  He joined the BJP last month after the NCP refused to vacate the seat for his electoral debut, and was subsequently given a ticket by the saffron party. He is pitted against NCP's Sangram Jagtap in the Ahmednagar Lok Sabha seat. Besides, many other rallies of other political party leaders have been scheduled across the state.

    Nizamabad Lok Sabha Seat May Enter Guinness Book With Record EVMs

    13 April 2019
    Nizamabad Lok Sabha constituency in Telangana, which went to elections, may well get into the Guiness Book of World Record for the use of largest number of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs).  With a high number of 185 candidates, including 178 farmers, in the contest, the Election Commission (EC) used 12 EVMs in each booth in the constituency. In any constituency, usually one or maximum four EVMs are used with one control unit in each booth, but in Nizamabad, 12 EVMs were linked to one control unit and the constituency has 1,778 polling centres. The EC used M3 type EVMs which can support up to 24 BUs (ballot Units). Each BU will have 24 names. Besides, large number of BUs, the EC used 2,200 Control Units and about 2,600 VVPATs for Nizamabad Constituency. This new version of EVMs was developed by the Electronics Corp of India Ltd (ECIL) and Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL). About Telangana: ♦ Capital: Hyderabad ♦ Chief Minister:  Chandrashekar Rao ♦ National Park: Mrugavani National Park, Mahavir Harina Vanasthali National Park ♦ Major airport: Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Shamshabad

    RailWire Wi-Fi facilitated at 1600 railway stations in India

    13 April 2019
    RailWire Wi-Fi by RailTel is now live at 1600 railway stations across the country, with Santacruz railway station in Mumbai becoming the 1600th station to become a RailWire Wi-Fi zone. RailTel has provided high speed Wi-Fi at 985 stations with own/other funding and at 415 A, A1 and C category stations, associating Google as the technology partner for radio access. RailTel has also tied up with Tata Trust for providing free WiFi at 4,791 B, C, D and E category railway stations. RailWire: RailWire is a retail broadband initiative of RailTel, which envisages extending broadband and application services to the public. About RailTel Corporation of India: ♦ RailTel is one of the largest and fastest public Wi-Fi networks in the world. ♦ It focuses on providing broadband and VPN services. ♦ It is a ‘Mini Ratna (category-I)’ PS and is one of the largest neutral telecom infrastructure providers in the country owning a pan-India optic fibre network on exclusive Right of Way (ROW) along Railway track. ♦ Chairperson: Shri. Puneet Chawla ♦ Founded: September 2000 ♦ Headquarters: Gurugram

    Pink booth to attract women friends for their right to vote

    12 April 2019
    Pink polling booth at Jamui parliamentary constituency in Bihar. All polling party including security personnel are women discharging their election duty. Women in this constituency are happy and turning in a large number to vote for the first phase of Lok Sabha elections 2019. The decision was taken to make women feel special and come in large number in order to cast their vote. The 40 Lok Sabha seats in Bihar, will vote in the first of the seven-phase polls.

    DoT approved the merger of TTSL and Bharti Airtel

    12 April 2019
    The Department of Telecom (DoT) approved for the merger of Tata Teleservices (TTSL) with Bharti Airtel, subject to the condition that the Sunil Bharti Mittal-led firm furnishes Rs.7,200 crore worth bank guarantee. Both the companies are expected to submit an undertaking on matters related to court cases before the merger is taken on record. The merger will be taken on record after Airtel submits the bank guarantee of about Rs.6,000 crore for one-time spectrum charges and another Rs.1,200 crore for the spectrum that would be acquired from TTSL. Tata Teleservices Limited: ♦ Founded on: 1996 ♦ Founder: Ratan Tata ♦ Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra ♦ Interim Chairman: Ratan Tata ♦ MD & CEO: Srinath Narasimhan   

    Shiv Das Meena to be designated as the Chairman cum Managing Director (CMD) of National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC)

    12 April 2019
    He is appointed as the Chairman cum Managing Director (CMD) of National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC). He assumed office as Chairman-cum-Managing Director, NBCC. About National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC) It is Central-owned enterprise Public Sector Undertaking Founded: 1960 Headquarters: Delhi, India Owner: Government of India New Chairman-cum-Managing Director: Shiv Das Meena

    Arappor Iyakkam launched the Arappor App

    11 April 2019
    Arappor Iyakkam launched the Arappor App, which is available free on Google Playstore, offering details of all candidates contesting in the Lok Sabha elections in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. The app is aimed at creating awareness among the people about the candidates in their constituencies. This is an effort to make people aware of the choices they have before they go to vote on April 18. This information is based on the declaration by the candidates in their affidavits. It is expected that all voters should use this app to know the details of candidates in their constituency. The details include educational background, profession, annual income in the last five years, asset, liabilities, and details of criminal cases pending against them. The app can be downloaded on any android mobile from the link in both English and Tamil. It has been presented in a simple app. It will soon be updated with information on the byelections for Assembly constituencies.

    ECI banned Ads that are not pre certified by screening committees

    11 April 2019
    The Election Commission of India (ECI) announced a ban on parties, candidates, and others from publishing political advertisements on polling day and a day prior to it in each of the seven phases of Lok Sabha polls unless their contents are pre-certified by screening committees. EC has stated that the Media Certification and Monitoring Committee at the state and district levels be immediately activated to examine and pre-certify all such advertisements received from the political parties. To ensure that no untoward incident takes place because of any inflammatory or hate advertisements.   At present, electronic media is barred from showing election publicity material during the last 48 hours before the conclusion of polling. Using its constitutional powers, the Election Commission has directed no political party, candidates or others will publish any advertisement in the print media on the day and one day prior to polling day in all the phases unless they are pre-certified by the screening committees. The EC had taken such a decision for the first time in 2015 Bihar polls. Election Commission of India (ECI): ♦ ECI is responsible for administering election processes in India ♦ Formed: 25 January 1950 ♦ Headquarters: New Delhi ♦ Chief Election Commissioner: Sunil Arora ♦ Election Commissioner: Ashok Lavasa

    SC Collegium recommends Justice Vikram Nath as First Chief Justice of Andhra Pradesh HC

    11 April 2019
    Supreme Court Collegium recommended that Allahabad High Court judge, Justice Vikram Nath appointed as the first Chief Justice of the recently constituted Andhra Pradesh High Court at Amaravati. The office of the Andhra Pradesh High Court Chief Justice has been lying vacant since the day of its inception. Justice Vikram Nath obtained his law degree in 1986. Following his enrolment in 1987 and he practised in the Allahabad High Court. He was appointed an additional judge of the Allahabad High Court in 2004. About Supreme Court Established: 1 October 1935 Location: Tilak Marg, New Delhi, Composition method: Collegium of the Supreme Court of India Authorized by: Constitution of India Judge term length: Mandatory retirement at 65 years of age

    Emami Limited ropes in Varun Dhawan as Navratna Cool brand ambassador

    11 April 2019
    Emami Limited roped in Indian actor Varun Dhawan as brand ambassador of Navratna Cool. The TV commercials are directed by Luv Kalla and shot in the UK. Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Govinda, Chiranjeevi, Shilpa Shetty and Jr NTR served as Brand Ambassadors of Navaratna Brand. Harsha V Agarwal is the Director of Emami Limited.

    India becomes YouTube largest and fastest growing market

    10 April 2019
    India has become YouTube’s largest and fastest growing market with 265 million Indians watching the video-sharing website every month. In the last year, YouTube’s consumption on mobile has increased to 85%, with 60% of the watch time coming from outside the six largest metros in India. Today, YouTube creators have become effective storytellers, with more than 1,200 Indian creators crossing the million subscriber-milestone, compared to five years ago, when there were only two creators.  Youtube: ♦ Founded on: February 14, 2005 ♦ Headquarters: California, United States ♦ CEO: Susan Wojcicki  ♦ Parent: Google (2006–present) YouTube today has become the first stop for users to consume content, whether they are looking for entertainment or information. It is this incredible variety of content combined with the growing reach that makes YouTube a perfect platform for brands to drive personalised engagement. User behaviour has shifted massively to mobile video and therein lies the opportunity for marketers today.  YouTube allows users to upload, view, rate, share, add to playlists, report, comment on videos, and subscribe to other users. It offers a wide variety of user-generated and corporate media videos.  

    Indian Railways creates record; Free WiFi at 500 rail stations in 7 days

    10 April 2019
    Modi government’s ‘Digital India’ initiative, RailTel, which is a mini ratna CPSU (Central Public Sector Undertaking) under the Ministry of Railways has provided free high-speed WiFi service to as many as 500 stations in a short period of seven days with ‘RailWire’. RailTel has also tied up with Tata Trust for providing free WiFi at 4,791 B, C, D and E category railway stations. Recently, Northern Railways’ Sahibabad station has become the 1500th railway station in India to get the free WiFi facility. The free WiFi project was initiated from Mumbai Central railway station. About RailTel Corporation of India: ♦ RailTel is one of the largest and fastest public Wi-Fi networks in the world. ♦ It focuses on providing broadband and VPN services. ♦ Chairperson: Shri. Puneet Chawla ♦ Founded: September 2000 ♦ Headquarters: Gurugram

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulates Maldives President Solih for his partys landslide victory

    10 April 2019
    Prime Minister Narendra Modi personally called Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih to congratulate him on his party’s exceptionally strong performance in the Maldives Majlis elections of 2019, in which the Maldives’ Democratic Party secured 65 of 87 seats, and won a landslide supermajority in parliament. He further conveyed his full confidence that the Maldives Government can deliver on their promises towards the Maldivian people in the upcoming five years, and that the Indian Government will always stand ready to be of assistance to the Maldives.

    CBDT detects unaccounted cash collection racket of Rs 281 crore in Madhya Pradesh

    10 April 2019
    Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) searches in Madhya Pradesh by Delhi Directorate of Income Tax have detected widespread and well-organised racket for the collection of unaccounted cash of about 281 crore rupees through various persons.  The department has also detected a trail of 20 crore rupees suspect cash allegedly being moved to the headquarters of a major political party in Delhi from the house of an important person. The CBDT identified the political party nor the senior functionary. It added that records of collection and disbursement of cash in the form of handwritten diaries, computer files and excel sheets were found and seized and it corroborates the above findings. The several unaccounted and benami properties at posh locations in Delhi have also been detected.

    Indias gold reserves increased in February

    10 April 2019
    The World Gold Council (WGC) said that India has marginally increased its gold holding to 1.7 tonnes in February while maintaining the tenth position among countries in terms of yellow metal reserves. India added 1.7 tonnes in February while most other countries, except Russia and China, had their reserves unchanged in the recent past. As per WGC, India had total gold reserves of 608.7 tonnes in February, marginally up from the previous month’s holding of 607 tonnes. World Gold Council (WGC): ♦ Headquarters: London, United Kingdom ♦ President: David Harquail ♦ CEO: David Tait ♦ WGC is the market development organisation for the gold industry ♦ It works across all parts of the industry, from gold mining to investment ♦ The aim is to stimulate and sustain demand for gold  

    SC directs EC to raise random matching of VVPAT slips

    10 April 2019
    Supreme Court directed the EC to increase random matching of VVPAT slips with EVMs to five polling booths per assembly segment from one at present, in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls saying it will provide greater satisfaction not just to political parties but the entire electorate.  The apex court did not agree to the demand of 21 Opposition leaders, led by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, for counting of at least 50 per cent of the Voter Verifiable Paper.

    NGT forms a new body to examine alleged erosion of Yamuna floodplain in Sonipat

    10 April 2019
    National Green Tribunal established a committee planned to examine the alleged erosion of Yamuna floodplain due to movement of heavy vehicles in Sonipat district in Haryana. The committee, for-person bench, will comprise NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel ,who is the head of the body, the director of the Mines and Geology Department, member secretary of the Haryana State Pollution Control Board and principal secretary of the Haryana Irrigation. The nodal agency for coordination and compliance will be the principal secretary of the Haryana irrigation and water resources department. The joint report may be furnished within a month so this issue will be solved before the monsoon. About NGT: Enacted by: Parliament of India Established: 2010 Composition Method: Environmental law Tribunal About the Yamuna Source: Yamunotri Mouth: Triveni Sangam Location: Prayagraj (Allahabad), India Length : 1,376 km (855 mi) Basin size : 366,223 km2

    IIT Madras tie up with GE to set up Indias first Cold Spray SMART Lab

    10 April 2019
    American conglomerate, General Electric in association with IIT-Madras, established India’s first ‘Cold Spray’ SMART (Surface Modification and Additive Research Technologies) Laboratory in the institution thereby IIT-M became the only academic institution with High-Pressure Cold Spray(HPCS) facility in India. The High-Pressure Cold Spray machinery carried from Plasma Giken, Japan. GE India Technology Centre CEO Alok Nanda and IIT Madras Director Bhaskar Ramamurthi inaugurated the laboratory on 5th April 2019 About GE: ♦ Founded: April 15, 1892 ♦ Headquarters: Boston, Massachusetts, United States ♦ Fields: Aviation, Healthcare, Power, renewable energy, digital industry, additive manufacturing, venture capital and finance, lighting, Oil and Gas.

    Around 5,000 Naga Konyak women dance set a Guinness World Record in Nagaland

    9 April 2019
    In an attempt to set a new Guinness World Records in the category of ‘largest traditional Konyak dance display,’ around 5,000 Konyak community women, all decked up in colourful traditional attire, danced to the tune of a ceremonial song at Nagaland, coinciding with the Aoleang festival. The theme of this year’s Aoleang, also called Mini Hornbill festival, was ‘Empowering women for cultural heritage.’

    Supreme Court increased VVPAT verification for Lok Sabha election

    9 April 2019
    As per the Supreme Court’s order would be implemented in the Lok Sabha election scheduled to begin on April 11. The court refused to go into the issue of integrity of the EVMs at this belated stage. SC has increased the number of EVM-VVPATs subjected to physical verification in order to ensure the greatest degree of accuracy, satisfaction in the election process. Under the ECI guidelines, only the VVPAT slips from one EVM in every Assembly segment/constituency was subjected to physical verification. Now, with five such EVMs under physical scrutiny, the election would be ‘fool-proof’ and provide ‘greater satisfaction. The Supreme Court’s decision is far short of what 21 Opposition parties wanted. The parties wanted VVPAT verification in 50% or 125 polling booths in each constituency. The court said VVPAT verification of five EVMs, rather than in 125 polling booths, is more ‘viable at this point of time.’

    Elections Department of Puducherry launched DEO Puducherry app

    9 April 2019
    The Elections Department of Puducherry has launched DEO Puducherry, an IT application to help voters with details of all polling stations in 25 Assembly constituencies in Puducherry district, booth-level officers and police officials and counting results. The new app was launched by Senior Superintendent of Police (Law and Order) Apoorva Gupta.  The Election Department has scheduled various awareness activities to educate voters on the importance of voting and participation in elections for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections to Puducherry. As part of the initiative, the office of the District Election Officer has launched the mobile app to ensure that all election-related information could be easily accessed by voters through mobiles and other hand-held devices. The app features messages from the DEO, notifications issued from time to time on polling, propaganda, law and order regulations, contact details of DEO, Chief Electoral Officer, Returning Officers, Electoral Registration Officers, Booth Level Officers, Nodal Officers, and Police Officials.

    Platinum Jubilee Commemoration of the Battle of Kangla Tongbi at Kangla Tolbi War Memorial

    9 April 2019
    Kangla Tongbi War Memorial, (near Imphal) the Platinum Jubilee of the Battle of Kangla Tongbi War was commemorated by Army Ordnance Corps. The commemoration day was observed to honour the supreme sacrifice made by the courageous Ordnance Personnel of 221 Advance Ordnance Depot in the line of duty during the night of 6/ 7 April 1944 (during World War-II). After the wreath-laying ceremony by Lt Gen Dalip Singh, VSM, DGOS & Senior Colonel Commandant, senior dignitaries visited the Kangla Tongbi Children’s Home where the children were presented with gifts as a matter of charity. One of the fiercest battles of World War II, The Battle of Kangla Tongbi was fought by Ordnance personnel of 221 (AOD) Advance Ordnance Depot. The in-charge of the operations for the defence of the depot was Major Boyd, the Deputy Chief of Ordnance Officer (COO).   The squad comprised of Major Boyd, Havildar/ Clerk Store Basant Singh, Conductor Panken and other personnel.

    Study says 85 per cent Ujjwala beneficiaries in four States still use earthen stoves

    8 April 2019
    A new study from the Research Institute for Compassionate Economics (r.i.c.e) shows that 85% of Ujjwala beneficiaries in rural Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan still use solid fuels for cooking, due to financial reasons as well as gender inequalities. The resultant indoor air pollution can lead to infant deaths and harm child development, as well as contribute to heart and lung disease among adults, especially the women, cooking on these chulhas. The Ujjwala Yojna, launched in 2016, subsidises LPG connections for rural households by providing a free gas cylinder, regulator and pipe. Central government data shows that more than six crore households have received a connection through the scheme. The r.i.c.e study shows that in the four States surveyed, there has indeed been a substantial increase in LPG ownership due to the scheme, with 76% of households now owning an LPG connection.

    SEBI agrees to approve Airport Specific Fund worth Rs. 10,000 crore

    8 April 2019
    SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) approved an ‘airport’ specific fund. The name of the fund is ‘Taking Off To the Future Airport Fund’. It can raise a capital amounting to 1.5$bn (Rs. 10,000 crores). The ‘Sponsor and Investment Manager’ of the fund is based in Chennai and is termed as ‘Taking Off To The Future Investment Management LLP’. Gigi George leads the management and operation of ‘Sponsor and Investment Manager’ A minimum capital contribution of Rs. 3500 crore and a maximum of Rs. 7000 crore is targeted by the fund. On SEBI: The regulator for the securities market in India is the Securities and Exchange Board of India(SEBI)(established in 1988). On 12th May 1992, it became it became an autonomous body by the Government of India. Through the SEBI Act, 1992, SEBI was given statutory powers on 30 January 1992. On 10th January 2017, Ajay Tyagi was appointed as the chairman of SEBI by replacing U.K. Sinha.

    Chennai Central has been renamed as Puratchi Thalaivar Dr M G Ramachandran Chennai Central after Dr. MG Ramachandran

    8 April 2019
    Chennai Central railway station renamed by the Tamil Nadu State Government as Puratchi Thalaivar Dr MG Ramachandran Central Railway Station after late Chief Minister Dr. MG Ramachandran. Neeraj Sharma, Railway Executive Board Director notified that the change of name would be possible provided there should not be any inaugural event as a result of the election code of conduct. About Dr. MG Ramachandran Dr. Marudur Gopalan Ramachandran (17 Jan 1917-24 Dec 1987) as MG Ramachandran or ‘Makkal Thilagam’ (since he was a popular figure) was a veteran filmmaker, actor and politician.  He served for 10 years as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu (1977-1987). MG Ramachandran’s autobiography was posthumously published in 2003 (in two volunes) under the title ‘Naan Yaen Piranthaen (Why I was Born)’. His policies focused on economic growth and social welfare. He brought in many educational reforms, banned liquor, upgraded the mid-day meal scheme and worked for the preservation for the state’s cultural heritage. For his immense contribution to public service, M G Ramachandran was posthumously honoured with Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian award, by the Government of India in 1988.

    India evacuates peacekeeping CRPF contingent from Libya says EAM Sushma Swaraj

    8 April 2019
    India evacuated its entire contingent of 15 CRPF personnel from Tripoli after the situation suddenly worsened in Libya. The CRPF contingent was deployed as a peacekeeping force in Tripoli. The military conflict in Libya escalated after forces of Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar launched an air strike yesterday in an area in Tripoli and the government vowed a major counteroffensive. The United Nations called for a two-hour truce to allow evacuations of civilians and the wounded. Rivalries between Haftar and the government threaten to plunge the country into a civil war. Indian Ambassador in Tunisia has the concurrent charge of Libya.   

    MRM launches campaign to garner Muslim support for strong & stable government

    7 April 2019
    Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM), a social and educational reform movement working among the Muslims in India since 2002, undertaking the campaign to create awareness among the Muslim voters to cast their vote for a strong government at the Centre to ensure the all-round development of all the citizens. The MRM had done a similar exercise in 2014 to secure Muslim vote to its maximum all over the country. This time too, the MRM has decided to launch such a campaign especially when the Modi government had done so much for the Muslims of India.

    Madras HC directs Centre to ban TikTok for inappropriate videos on app

    7 April 2019
    The Central government has taken major steps in curbing various games which appeal on hindering human life. The Madras High Court also had some similar appeal on banning the TikTok app. Madras High Court on Thursday cited that the Chinese video app TikTok, was "encouraging pornography" and needed to be banned. The order also directs the media from telecasting videos made using the app. Taking matters seriously, the China-based company has released a statement as a response to yesterday's development. "At TikTok, we are committed to abiding by local laws and regulations. We fully comply with the Information Technology (Intermediaries Guidelines) Rules, 2011. We are currently awaiting the official order by the Honourable High Court of Madras and once received, we will review and take appropriate action regarding this matter. Maintaining a safe and positive in-app environment at TikTok is our priority. We have robust measures to protect users against misuse, protect their privacy and digital wellbeing.

    BSNL announced a slew of tariff plans for Ugadi

    7 April 2019
    Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) announced a slew of tariff plans as part of its Ugadi offering in Hyderabad. It also announced three new pre-paid plans to meet the demand of consumers who want voice-focussed plans rather than data-heavy ones.  BSNL has seen its rise in market share from 10.8% to 11.58%. Its consumers are using 8 TB data everyday and 42,600 existing users have shifted to 4G SIM showing the quality of our network and service. Incidentally, BSNL Telangana Circle’s 4G roll-out plan has eluded Hyderabad so far.

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